Nissans Gain Experience in First Two Rounds of Pirelli World Challenge at St. Petersburg

World Challenge GT Nissan GT-R

March 22-23, the first two races of the 2013 Pirelli World Challenge Series, GT and GTS races were run in St. Petersburg, Florida. The next race is April 21st in Long Beach, CA. For more race information head over to or to watch the livestream go here -

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – The first two rounds of the Pirelli World Challenge were a chance for the teams and driver to measure their cars against the competition.  The Nissan teams held their own during the two races at the St. Petersburg street course, but the bar moved higher during the off season.

"The Nissan teams and drivers did a good job this weekend. Brian Kleeman moved up eight spots in a short race on a tight course, which is amazing," said Rick Kulach of Nissan Motorsports.

Tim Bell qualified the CRP Racing Nissan GT-R 12th in the field for Saturday's race one, four seconds off the pace set by the Volvo S60 driven by Alex Figge of Denver, CO.  During the race, run on a typically tight street circuit in the city center, Bell overtook two of the Audi R8s en route to a solid 10th place finish in the GT class.

In race two on Sunday, Bell started 13th and struggled with a power steering issue before retiring from the race on lap seven.

World Challenge GTS 370Z

In GTS the fortunes were reversed. Race one was a challenge, with the Nissan 370Zs of Ric Bushey and Brian Kleeman qualifying 16th and 18th in class. Kleeman went off course at lap 15 of 33 and retired, while Bushey had a late flat tire and fell out of the race.

Day two was improved for the two teams. At the start of the race, Kleeman got a strong run in the number 07 370Z and worked his way past seven cars on lap one. Kleeman managed an 11th place finish in GTS and was awarded the Optima Batteries Standing Start Award for gaining eight spots during the race.

Bushey moved up four spots in the number 51 Nissan 370Z, finishing 16th. 

Kulach is encouraged by what he sees, but there's much to do. "Porsche, Audi, Volvo, Mercedes, GM and others have a significant amount of development in their cars over the seasons. We've got challenges and hard work ahead, but I know that Nissan has a tradition of winning and we will have our cars up front.  That's my commitment and our team's goals."

Source: Nissan News forum for discussion about importing vehicles over 25 years old to the US.

No comments:

Item Reviewed: Nissans Gain Experience in First Two Rounds of Pirelli World Challenge at St. Petersburg Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Sean Morris